The Intersection Of Race And Sex

1329 WordsNov 30, 20166 Pages
Intersectionality is defined by social categories, such as race and gender that have interconnected to apply to individuals and groups, causing an overlap, which has consequently created a system of discrimination and disadvantages (English Oxford Living Dictionary, 2016). Kimberle Crenshaw coined the term in her article ‘Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex: A Black Feminist Critique of Antidiscrimination Doctrine, Feminist Theory and Anti-racist Politics’ (1889) whereby her main focus is on the intersection of race and sex. Crenshaw refers to intersectionality as a ‘crossroad to describe how multiple oppressions are experienced. In her article she examines intersectionality through how the court interpret black women’s stories. She uses the case DeGrafffenreid V General Motors, whereby five black women (the Plaintiffs) accused the employers of discriminating against black women, as they lost their jobs after 1970 due to a ‘seniority based layoff’ during recession. Nevertheless, the judge rejected the plaintiffs’ claim, as the court states that they would of helped if it was an action for race or sex, “but not a combination of both” (Crenshaw, 1989, p.141). The example Crenshaw gives, identifies how multiple oppressions are experienced within intersectionality. In October 2016 Crenshaw gave an empowering speech on how the media only covers black male discrimination by the state, yet there are no stories about how black women are discriminated by the state,
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